All over designs or Pantographs
Here are 2 very different quilts, both quilted with the same, hand guided, pantograph pattern, Clematis. All over designs really look very nice on many quilts. Some fabrics do all the talking in some quilts, other times an all over design is just a better choice for the budget. I've seen applique quilts that have been quilted with all over designs and they were still gorgeous. Some quilts beg to be custom quilted but many times an all over design is just what the quilt needs.
These were all fabrics that I could use a light lavender thread that showed on the white as well as all the med/dark fabrics used. Often the biggest obstacle is choosing thread when you have a range of light, medium and dark fabrics and many colors. Somewhere the thread is going to blend. This particular quilt also needs careful consideration when choosing a design because you don't want the background fabric to show an odd line here and there. You want to be able to see some movement and know what the design is. The motifs in the design should not be so large that it only shows an odd line here and there in the light portions. This quilt would have been lovely with custom quilting but I think it is gorgeous with the pantograph design. Soft, feminine effect.
This is the same pantograph used on very busy fabrics. The fabrics do the talking on this lovely quilt. If the outer border would have shown quilting better, I would have suggested we quilt an all over in the body and then treat the 2 borders custom, but in this case, nothing really shows well except the light background in one border.
For those that may not be familiar with a pantograph pattern, a continuous line design is printed on a long roll of paper. Instead of looking at your quilt top, you must position your quilt precisely, and then stitch looking at a red laser dot on that pattern that moves as you push your machine along. You move your machine to follow the dot on the lines of the pattern. One of the guilds that I belong to recently changed their judging rules at their quilt show to include hand guided pantographs into the same category as digitized computer stitched designs! There is no comparison. A computer stitched design backtracks perfectly. Designs are much denser, usually using circles and intricate backtracking that is impossible to stitch out hand guided. Someday I may upgrade... but for now I am 100% hand guided.